Are You Bible- Phobic?
I saw a great phrase recently in the Center for Progressive Christianity’s newsletter-Bible phobic. The article talked about how progressive Christians have become Bible phobic because of the way the conservative fundamental movement has redefined the way we see the Bible. I appreciate organizations like the TCPC that encourage all of us to rediscover the Bible and reclaim its ancient wisdom. When read for its mystical and metaphysical meaning, considering the historical context, scientific knowledge at the time and the manner in which writers wrote in ancient times, the Bible can provide a deep spiritually transformative experience.
By the way, the website for the Center for Progressive Christianity is www.tcpc.org. Check them out-they have great stuff.
I know many people in our congregation cringe at the mention of the Bible. They feel compelled to disassociate themselves with what the Bible has come to mean. But, we throw the baby out with the bathwater when we do. There is a recipe for life embedded in the pages. There is the human drama played out over and over again. And there are a whole slew of people who suggest other ways to read the Bible that encourages deep thought, intense questioning, new insights and a redefinition of its tenets as science reveals more and more of its knowledge to us. Karen Armstrong wrote a great book called “The Bible-A Biography” where she traces the way the Bible was written and rewritten according to new understanding and insights. Effectively, it wasn’t until recently that the Bible was considered finished. Up until the last 500 years or so, writers felt entitled to rewrite, add, adjust the sacred text as they experienced new revelations. In fact, there is nothing to keep us from writing our own version of the Bible-one that speaks to each one of us individually and would allow us to live life richer, more generously. I know my life is becoming richer as I explore its pages with new eyes.